There are four dangerous fiscal fables afloat. Paul Krugman, who has been pleading for more deficit spending on a continuous basis in his New York Times column, is hawking all four fables. Pity our children if our policymakers continue to take his views seriously.
Until leading politicians reach the right balance of tax increases and spending cuts, any chance of long-term sustainability and returning to a Standard and Poor's AAA sovereign credit rating is slim.
With the economy showing signs of recovery, it's high time that our federal lawmakers move beyond these self-induced crises and begin to talk about tax reform that can help taxpayers move forward with a clear understanding of how the tax code works and how much they owe.
Obama changed political gears last week, and decided to take a new direction in his dealings with Republicans in Congress. This "charm offensive" will either later be seen as a meaningless photo-op gesture, or a brilliant strategic maneuver on the political chessboard. Time will tell.
The sequestration's full effects are not all clear, but it will severely impede scientific progress across the country, along with various public health programs.
What happened? How did "sequestration" -- a banal, bureaucratic, deliberately opaque word -- replace "fiscal cliff" in the media and in Congress?
With gridlock and malicious behavior paralyzing our government, it is now up to we, the people, to become more visible and vocal, to show Congress what needs to be done. Here are some thoughts and ideas on where we need to go from here, and how we can become involved.
No matter how well intentioned (and politically appealing), protecting individual values in isolation of the consequence to other values can never be as optimal as making decisions with the full system in view and on the table.
We've criticized both the president's handling of this situation and the media's reporting of it. But, in the end, this is an act of Congress. Congress passed the bill that put these cuts into effect, and it can repeal that bill -- today, if it so chooses.
As the threat of the so-called "financial sequester" looms nearer and nearer, we should all try to look on the bright side: We are getting way better at coming up with cool names for financial crises.
The Sequester is like the latest sequel to a movie no one wanted to see in the first place, but did anyway because it had a big budget behind it, and now has to watch because we've all already seen all the previous ones. The Fast and Furious Six of financial crises.
"Struggle" seems to be the operative word for the condition of small business today. Is there anything that can be done to help them in that struggle?
With late-breaking fiscal cliff tax legislation this year, the many tax law changes, delays in the start of tax season and important forms, just about everything needed to get your taxes done is working well right now, but that all could change after March 1.
It's the foregone conclusion that no matter which hand the folks in Washington try to play, the fact is taxes will be higher... much higher in the future.
Cutting money does not spur doom and gloom just as throwing money at a problem will not fix it. What matters is whether money is spent effectively.
After you've e-mailed your representatives, screamed at the television and torn your hair out, there is little more you can do about Washington's fiscal shenanigans. However, there is one thing you can do to protect yourself from the fallout: save more money.